HEALTH AND WELLBEING
As the nights draw in and the cold takes hold ask yourself are you happy or S.A.D this winter ?
Seasonal Affective Disorder affects 1 in 6 people Mark Shields Investigates... WHAT IS SEASONAL AFFECTIVE DISORDER? SAD (Seasonal Affective Disorder) is a type of depression that affects approximately 1 in 6 people every winter between September and April, in particular during December, January and February. It is caused by a biochemical imbalance in the hypothalamus due to the shortening of daylight hours and the lack of sunlight in winter. The hormone melatonin is produced by the pineal gland at night and it aids sleep, natural sunlight suppresses the production of melatonin and improves immune function. Therefore, during the winter months when natural sunlight is at its lowest SAD can occur. For many people SAD is a seriously disabling illness, preventing them from functioning normally without continuous medical treatment. For others, 1 in 50, it is a mild but debilitating condition causing tiredness, lethargy, sleep and eating problems. It is commonly known as “the winter blues”. SAD may begin at any age but the main age of onset is between 18 and 40 years. It occurs throughout the northern and southern hemispheres but is extremely rare in those living within 30
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degrees of the Equator, where daylight hours are long, constant and extremely bright. SYMPTOMS OF SAD Many of people are puzzled year after year when every winter they seem to feel tired, lethargic, and suffer a loss of enthusiasm or energy. A great deal of those people do not realize that they are experiencing the symptoms are SAD, instead they believe that it is the feeling of the lazy days of summer disappearing and the grey days winter are approaching. The main recognizable symptoms of SAD are the following: • Sleep problems, with sometimes a desire to oversleep, or alternatively a trouble in sleeping with disturbed sleep and early morning awakening. • Lack of energy and a feeling of fatigue affecting normal daily functioning. • Weight gain and overeating. This involves a craving for carbohydrates like bread and potatoes and a craving for sweet foods and junk food.
Winter health and Wellbeing - Immune Boost...Christmas at the Fish Market - Game on....